My friendships are not defined by the number of times I see someone in a day, a week, or even a month. Some friends I see every day. Some friends I see every week. Some, I see when I vacation. Others, I've never met in person.
I've never considered it odd to make friends online. When I was in middle school and making websites on Geocities like a boss (RIP Geocities. I miss you), I made some friends my age. As an adult, I've met a multitude of wonderful women through various outlets, one of which being Weddingbee. Of course, I've also made a bunch of friends through this blog, too. Today, one of these friends needs some help.
Layla is a witty, kind, and overall awesome girl. We "met" on Weddingbee, and have moved on to be Twitter/blog buddies. She's going through a rough time right now, but the good news is - you can help! Here's her story:
One month after her 30th birthday, Layla was diagnosed with early stage cervical cancer (1A Adenocarcinoma). She was extraordinarily lucky that it was caught early, and had a simple surgery to remove the cancerous cells.
Three years later, Layla was in horrible pain that affected nearly every aspect of her life. Temporarily uninsured due to a job change, she paid out of pocket last October to go to the doctor and make sure the cancer had not returned. Thankfully, it had not. However, her doctor believes that she has pelvic adhesions and Endometriosis due to the previous surgery, but it can’t be diagnosed until an additional surgery (laparoscopy) is performed. The doctor also found out Layla has cervical stenosis, which basically means her cervix has completely shut down due to the scar tissue from the previous surgery. These issues make her miserable most of the time, making simple things like going to the bathroom and menstruation horribly painful, and sexual intercourse impossible. He stated that if she wanted to have children one day, even sperm could not pass through her cervix, and she would have to have intrauterine insemination.
The doctor wanted to schedule surgery as soon as the insurance at her new job went into effect. Her company fired her the day her insurance became valid, ten days before Christmas, plainly stating that it was because of her health issues.
Fortunately, she got on her husband’s insurance, which went into effect February 1st. As soon as she could, Layla scheduled surgery for March 22nd. Then her insurance company dropped a bomb: because she went to the doctor (even as a self-pay patient) within a three month period prior to her enrollment date, they were considering her health issues to be a pre-existing condition, and would not insure any doctor visits, medication, or surgery for 388 days.
When you are in near constant pain and can’t work, 388 days is a long time to wait. The sooner Layla can have this surgery, the sooner she can return to work (hopefully with a nicer company!) and start living her life again. Her doctor has been nice enough to work out a deal with her if she can pay as a cash patient: he decreased the amount of her surgery to $4,000, and the cost of the anesthesia to $500, with additional fees for biopsies of removed tissue to be determined.
The problem is, Layla is unemployed due to this, has used her savings to pay for living expenses and medical bills, and has been denied loans for the surgery because of her unemployment status. She does not have close family, so she can’t ask them for help. Surgery is scheduled for March 22nd, and Layla and her husband are unable to secure a loan due to her unemployment. She needs some help, and she needs it in 2 weeks.
So, how can you help?
- Donate! Use the button at the top right of this page, or click here. We're collecting money through PayPal, so it's totally secure. Any little bit will help us reach her goal of $4,000.
- Bid on sweet eBay deals! Several of us are putting up some items on eBay, with the proceeds going to Operation Layla. Need a used iPod Touch or a pretty Coach purse? Stop on by and check 'em out. Nobody is really bidding on them yet... so you could score some cool stuff on the cheap, AND help out someone in need!
- Eat Carbs! No really, we're organizing an online bake sale (drool) to raise some money for Operation Layla! More details on that to come. Why did I give up cookies for Lent?! *Shakes tiny fist*
- Follow Us! Follow the hash tag #OperationLayla on Twitter. Let us know if you want to get involved in any way!